We Resist: Day 784

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One of the difficulties in resisting the Trump administration, the Republican Congressional majority, and Republican state legislatures (plus the occasional non-Republican who obliges us to resist their nonsense, too, like we don't have enough to worry about) is keeping on top of the sheer number of horrors, indignities, and normalization of the aggressively abnormal that they unleash every single day.

So here is a daily thread for all of us to share all the things that are going on, thus crowdsourcing a daily compendium of the onslaught of conservative erosion of our rights and our very democracy.

Stay engaged. Stay vigilant. Resist.

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Earlier today by me: Beto O'Rourke Announces He's Running for President and Russia Threatens to Arm Submarine with Nuclear Doomsday Devices and Quote of the Day.

Here are some more things in the news today...

Karoun Demirjian at the Washington Post: In Overwhelmingly Bipartisan Vote, House Calls for Mueller Report to Be Made Public. "The House voted overwhelmingly and in bipartisan fashion to urge the Justice Department to publicly release the entirety of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's report into Russian interference in the 2016 election, once completed. The move is an attempt to 'send a clear signal both to the American people and the Department of Justice' that lawmakers expect to see the full account of Mueller's work, according to the House Judiciary Committee's chairman, Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.). The final vote count was 420 in favor, with no one voting no. Four lawmakers voted 'present.'"

Interesting. So, this is either confirmation that the Mueller investigation is truly a joke and the GOP knows it, or a signal that the GOP is ready for Trump to get to fuck so they can install Pence. Possibly a little from column A and a little from column B.

The resolution is non-binding, so some people have suggested that they voted for it knowing it wouldn't matter. Except the Republicans are the masters of the symbolic bullshit vote! They don't do anything without thinking about it, no less with zero dissenters.

And if their constituent base pays attention to that sort of vote at all, I'd think they'd have wanted their reps to vote no, because they want them to protect the president from this travesty of justice. For the Fox News set, Trump is a mighty victim of Mueller, after all!

Like I said: Interesting.

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Kathryn Krawczyk at the Week: Matthew Whitaker Just Changed His Story on Michael Cohen's Case, House Judiciary Chair Says. "Matthew Whitaker previously declined to address whether he spoke with [Donald] Trump about Michael Cohen's campaign finance crimes. He apparently gave lawmakers a clearer picture of such a possibility on Wednesday. In February, the former acting attorney general appeared before the House Judiciary Committee for an open-door congressional testimony and wouldn't say whether he talked with Trump about Cohen. But since then, a report from The New York Times showed that the president asked Whitaker to put a Trump supporter in charge of an investigation into his former lawyer." Oopsy!

Veronica Stracqualursi at CNN: Top Judiciary Democrat Says 'Sleep Well' Email to Michael Cohen Suggested Pardon. "CNN obtained two emails from April 2018 between Michael Cohen and Robert Costello, an attorney who said he had spoken with the president's lawyer in the Russia investigation, Rudy Giuliani. Although Costello's email did not specifically mention a pardon, he wrote to Cohen, 'Sleep well tonight, you have friends in high places.' 'I take it as the president or people on his behalf may have been dangling the possibility of a pardon in front of Mr. Cohen to say to him, don't tell the truth, don't implicate the president. Play the game right and you have friends in high places, and you'll be okay, we'll give you a pardon,' New York Rep. Jerry Nadler told CNN's John Berman on New Day on Thursday. Nadler said that, if true, backchannel involvement from Trump in Cohen's case would be a 'terrible' obstruction of justice and abuse of power." Indeed it would!

Erica Werner, Seung Min Kim, and John Wagner at the Washington Post: Three Senators Crash Trump Dinner with Last-Ditch Plea as Opposition Mounts to Emergency Declaration. "Drama mounted in the Senate Thursday ahead of a showdown vote over [Donald] Trump's border emergency declaration, as a GOP senator described crashing the White House residence with two of his colleagues to plead with Trump for a deal. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said he showed up at the White House Wednesday night with Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Ben Sasse (Neb.), interrupting Trump as he dined with First Lady Melania Trump. They discussed how to satisfy GOP concerns on the emergency declaration but reached no agreement, and Trump renewed his veto threat Thursday morning."

Nothing about that sounds real, including the part where Donald and Melania were having dinner together. This is theater. And the fact that prominent Republicans want to appear as though they are trying to stop Trump — without, let us carefully note, actually doing anything to actually stop him with their Senate majority — makes me feel even more strongly that Trump may have reached the end of his usefulness to the GOP. They still want him to enact his horrific agenda, but they're now at a point where they want to look like they disagree with it. That's worth noting.

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[Content Note: Human rights violations; violence; death; stochastic terrorism. Covers whole section.]

These next two items are related, signaling how far we have already descended into an authoritarian regime with total abandonment of human rights:

Ashley Turner at CBNC: State Department Report Calls Jamal Khashoggi's Death a Human Rights Violation But Doesn't Implicate the Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman. "The State Department acknowledges Saudi Arabia's killing of U.S. resident Jamal Khashoggi in its annual human rights report but makes no mention of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in the section on his death. That's despite reports that the CIA determined the Saudi leader ordered Khashoggi's assassination."

"Human rights" has become a punchline as the Trump Regime embraces murderous dictators around the world.

And at home, Trump continues to wage his campaign of stochastic terrorism, conveying a thinly veiled message to his supporters that they should "get tough" on dissidents:


Important related reading today from Adam Serwer at the Atlantic: White Nationalism's Deep American Roots.

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Michael LaForgia, Matthew Rosenberg, and Gabriel J.X. Dance at the New York Times: Facebook's Data Deals Are Under Criminal Investigation. "Federal prosecutors are conducting a criminal investigation into data deals Facebook struck with some of the world's largest technology companies, intensifying scrutiny of the social media giant's business practices as it seeks to rebound from a year of scandal and setbacks. A grand jury in New York has subpoenaed records from at least two prominent makers of smartphones and other devices, according to two people who were familiar with the requests and who insisted on anonymity to discuss confidential legal matters. Both companies had entered into partnerships with Facebook, gaining broad access to the personal information of hundreds of millions of its users."

Kyla Mandel at ThinkProgress: Republican Congressman Says Green New Deal Is 'Tantamount to Genocide'. "House Republicans are ramping up their opposition to the Green New Deal, invoking increasingly dire rhetoric as the proposal gains prominence. In a press conference on Thursday, several top Republicans called for Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) to direct all House committees to hold hearings to discuss the details of the ambitious climate action proposal. Calling the Green New Deal resolution a 'fantasy-land proposal' and 'tantamount to genocide,' House Republicans said they want to have a public debate on the plan in order to 'pull the curtain back.'"

IN OTHER NEWS... Kalhan Rosenblatt and Phil Helsel at NBC News: Millions in Path of Potential Bomb Cyclone as Winter Storm Slams Central U.S.
As many as 74 million people were expected to face some type of severe weather ranging from blizzard conditions to heavy rain and flooding through Friday.

...Authorities said 1,100 motorists were "stuck and stranded" in "treacherous conditions" on roads in Colorado's El Paso County. Sheriff Bill Elder added that search and rescue operations would continue through the night. His advice was to "STAY HOME."

Around 86,000 customers in Colorado were without electricity early Thursday, according to Xcel Energy. Another 47,000 had no power in New Mexico and northern Texas.

...Denver International Airport's runways were shut down Wednesday, and almost 1,400 flights were canceled amid the whiteout, the Denver Post reported. The newspaper noted that it was only the fourth time in the airport's history that runways had been closed.

More than 5 inches of snow was recorded at the airport as of 5 p.m. Wednesday, while parts of Colorado Springs and Aurora reported 10 inches, according to the weather service.

...Blizzard warnings stretched on a large swath of the central U.S., from eastern Colorado and Wyoming, portions of Nebraska, and large parts of the Dakotas and into western Minnesota as of Wednesday night, while eastern Nebraska, southeastern South Dakota, and parts of Iowa were under flood warnings.

Between 6 to 12 inches of snow is likely for the central and northern plains through Thursday, particularly in the central portions of the Dakotas, the weather service said in a forecast discussion.

...Severe thunderstorm warnings also stretched from southwestern Texas to parts of Kansas, according to the weather service. Parts of Wisconsin and Michigan were among the areas under a flash flood watch.

...In Texas, Dallas-Fort Worth recorded gusts of wind between 75 mph and 78 mph early Wednesday. ...In Tennessee and parts of Mississippi, as much as 4 inches of rain could fall through Friday.
So, you know, good thing Republicans are spending their time complaining about climate change legislation and making up fairy stories about how Democrats don't want you to be able to eat cheeseburgers anymore or whatthefuckever.

What have you been reading that we need to resist today?

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